Our original plan for our kitchen was to live with it the way it was for a year or two before we did a full remodel.
But on our first night in the new house, we just couldn’t help ourselves and a mini kitchen remodel began.
We decided that since we spend so much time in the kitchen and it is at the center of the floor plan, it made sense to make a few big-impact, small-cost projects that would totally transform the space and make it more enjoyable for us to work and gather in.
Before I show you the updated kitchen, let’s remember what it looked like when we moved in.
The kitchen is a great size and the layout works well. The floors and countertops were updated and while not necessarily what I would choose now, they are in good shape. The cabinets are solid wood and appliances work great.
We were not crazy about the orange tone of the cabinets and how it contrasted so much with the cool grays of the floors and counters. The bulkiness and detailing of the upper cabinets, the shallow double basin sink and oddly placed faucet, and lack of lighting were also issues to tackle. These things didn’t seem too difficult to change. We knew if we DIYed it all, we could turn this kitchen into a really attractive and functional space.
We are finally finished with the makeover and so happy with how it turned out!
Ready to see the new kitchen?
When you walk from the entry into the main living area, this is now what you see:
We love the way the dark cabinets tie in with the existing gray floors and granite countertops. Someday we will have wood floors in here and simple white countertops, but this was a great lesson in working with what we have.
Bringing in the wood shelves and brass hardware brought in much-needed warmth and really finished out the space.
The previous white double basin sink was replaced with a single basin stainless steel sink that I adore. Just for fun, we mixed up the metals and used a brass-toned faucet. Updating the sink and faucet instantly elevated the style and function of the kitchen. The sink/disposal/faucet combo was second to the shelves in cost and worth every penny.
The wood shelves are absolutely everything I was hoping they would be. They add warmth, an organic and modern feel and allow me to style with everyday kitchen things. We had open shelves in our last kitchen and not only love how they look, but also how well they function for us.
The shelves are reclaimed cedar planks from our favorite local salvage store. We loved their natural color, so only gave them a few coats of clear polyurethane to seal them.
Figuring out how to securely hang the shelves was the trickiest part of the whole makeover. I was set on floating shelves for their modern simplicity, but the wood we bought was just not going to work with the necessary floating shelf brackets. We ran through just about every shelf bracket option and landed on these stainless steel angle brackets.
As it turns out, I don’t mind the brackets showing at all. We are fans of mixing metals and it is nice to repeat the silver tone of the sink, chairs and pendant light up on the brackets as well.
Let’s look one more time at the before and after photos side by side:
I just love a good before and after and this kitchen was the perfect candidate.
By adding lighting, paint, updating the sink and faucet, switching out hardware and putting up open shelves, this kitchen looks like a brand new room.
We finished the makeover on Christmas Eve just a few hours before our family arrived (nothing like pushing it right to the deadline!) and it was the best feeling to have a pretty kitchen to work and entertain in.
The kitchen is truly where we spend most of our family time and while it would have been fine to wait until we tear out the whole thing, doing this mini makeover reminded us that making small improvements right now always feels worth it. And now we’re tempted to nix the big remodel and just enjoy the kitchen as it is!
If your kitchen is feeling dated and doesn’t reflect your style (but you are not quite ready for a full remodel), I have six suggestions for how you can make those updates without spending a fortune.
Click the image (or RIGHT HERE) to get the guide! I hope it will be extra helpful to you as you think about updating your kitchen.
wall + trim color: Sherwin Williams Shoji White
cabinet color: Sherwin Williams Iron Ore